Shanielynn-Debra Asher - 1st Place Winner
Below is copy of the email sent to the parents (Shanty and Ron Asher)
Congratulations! We are pleased to inform you that Shanielynn-Debra Asher is the 1st Place Winner in the Literature Category, High School Division, for the 2020-2021 Hawaii State PTSA Reflections Program.
As a 1st place winner, Shanielynn-Debra’s entry has been forwarded to the National PTA for judging at a national level, where it will be competing among entries from 54 PTA Congresses nationwide.
Due to COVID restrictions, we will be taking our event virtual. We are currently working on creating a video honoring our Reflections winners, which will be posted on our website. We will also be scheduling a virtual awards ceremony via Zoom. Once the date is finalized we will reach out to you with an invite.
By the end of the month, your student will also receive a certificate of recognition and a 1st place ribbon. If you would like your student to be recognized on our website holding their certificate and ribbon, please email a photo to HawaiiPTSAprograms@gmail.com.
We are very proud of Shanielynn-Debra’s artistic contribution to this year’s theme “I Matter Because” and we would like to thank you for your participation.
Hawaii State PTSA
I Matter Because
I matter because
I am one of the voices whose tone has grown weak
I am one of the many silenced who is ready to speak
the voice of my people has been constantly overlooked
But I will stand for my Kosraeans with a stern voice that will get you hooked
ongoing stereotypes which supposedly define who I am
and hurtful comments claiming I’m a cockroach and that I better scram
worried about my grades or else I might fall into the assumptions
being told I’m really pretty for a Micronesian and replying with an “Awe thanks” as I hide my irritation
but then again there I am judging Micronesians walking with their Micronesian skirt with hate
because I’m tired of working my butt off just to be overlooked with the trouble that they create
the actions of one does not justify the blanket perception of a whole ethnicity
and my people should not be shunned because of such complicity
I matter because
I have built up the courage to speak the unspoken
I have had enough of the subtle and not so subtle hatred because I have awoken
spending my days ashamed of being a Micronesian
and taking the time to build the perfect yet misleading impression
being told that I am too civilized to be from such a place
most say it as a compliment but instead I take it as a slap to the face
Watching my mother as she works hard for us to fight against the discrimination
Or is she working hard so that we can run away from such labels to avoid oppression
the wrongdoings done by one SHOULD NOT define the perception of my whole ethnicity
so hear my voice and my pleas and help me end such toxicity
“sometimes even to live is an act of courage”(Lucius Annaeus Seneca), but my courage helps me reveal my world
I matter because I will be the voice of the silenced who wishes to be heard